Numerous student-run and AUC-sponsored organizations engage faculty, staff, and students in community-based projects year-round. These include periodic health and wellness screenings, volunteering at foster homes and schools, cleanup and beautification projects, tutoring and reading programs, and health education. Students can also earn course credit for community engagement projects. Students enroll in an elective course to learn about community engagement and work with communities to design a program that aligns with community priorities. 

Three times annually, AUC stages Community Action Day, which gathers physicians-in-training and their families, along with members of AUC’s faculty, staff and administration for events held throughout the island. The day’s events focus on health, education, animal welfare, and environmental awareness, and are conducted in partnership with St. Maarten organizations. Programs like this provide students with the opportunity to interact with their community and perform operational support, health screenings and education.

AUC is actively involved with the St. Maarten government through the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development, and Labor to collaborate on health-related initiatives to address public health issues, such as mosquito-borne diseases. These activities complement the AUC medical education curriculum by helping students develop cultural competency and other important skills and attributes that are critical to their development as effective and compassionate physicians. 

NOTABLE COMMUNITY INITIATIVES

Working To Improve Health
  • Health screenings and prevention programs

  • Programs to engage with the elderly and support their continued cognitive function

  • Sustained efforts aimed at diseases such as breast cancer, diabetes, and HIV/AIDs

Enriching The Lives Of Young People
  • Support for school meal programs

  • Youth mentoring for children 

  • Fun activities for children/teens in foster homes 

  • Scholarship program for University of St. Maarten students

  • Beautification projects and repairs/renovations to local schools 

Addressing Public Health Issues
  • Ministry collaborations to address tropical disease-related issues, including surveillance and programs to prevent mosquito breeding

  • Collaborations to enhance local healthcare professionals

The Department of Community Engagement serves as the primary administrative link between the community and AUC's physicians-in-training. Consistent with the University’s desire to produce physicians with a lifelong commitment to community service, the department serves the following functions:

  • Builds and maintains partnerships with community organizations and foundations 

  • Provides students with supervised credit-bearing community engagement opportunities which support their professional identification and understanding of the social responsibility implicit in a physician’s role

  • Assists the wide variety of student organizations in developing service projects that address health needs of St. Maarten residents